Article

Functional impairments in adults with self-reports of diagnosed ADHD: A controlled study of 1001 adults in the community

Pediatric Psychopharmacology Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, Yawkey Center for Outpatient Care, Boston, MA 02114, USA.
The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 5.14). 04/2006; 67(4):524-40. DOI: 10.4088/JCP.v67n0403
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The objective of this study was to evaluate functional impairments in a nonreferred sample of adults identifying themselves as having been diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) by a clinician in their community.
We completed a survey in April and May 2003 of a community sample of 500 adults who reported having received a diagnosis of ADHD in the community and 501 gender- and age-matched comparisons from a national sample representative of the U.S. population.
Adults with self-reports of diagnosed ADHD in the community were significantly less likely to have graduated high school (83% vs. 93% of controls; p < or = .001) or obtain a college degree (19% vs. 26%; p < .01), were less likely to be currently employed (52% vs. 72%; p < or = .001), and had significantly more mean job changes over 10 years (5.4 vs. 3.4 jobs; p < or = .001). They also were significantly more likely to have been arrested (37% vs. 18% of controls; p < or = .001) or divorced (28% vs. 15%; p < or = .001) and were significantly less satisfied (p < or = .001) with their family, social, and professional lives.
Adults who reported having received a diagnosis of ADHD in the community had significant impairment in multiple domains of functioning compared with age- and gender-matched controls without this diagnosis, highly consistent with findings derived from carefully diagnosed referred samples.

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    • "Compared to those without ADHD, men and women with ADHD report being less satisfied in their romantic relationships as well as discord in such relationships (e.g., Babinski et al. 2010; Barkley et al. 2008), including intimate partner violence (Wymbs et al. 2012, in press). Finally, when married, individuals with ADHD are more likely to divorce than individuals without ADHD (e.g., Biederman et al. 2006; Fargason and Ford 1994; Kessler et al. 2006; Murphy and Barkley 1996). Similar problems also exist for individuals who exhibit ED. "
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    • "Compared to those without ADHD, men and women with ADHD report being less satisfied in their romantic relationships as well as discord in such relationships (e.g., Babinski et al. 2010; Barkley et al. 2008), including intimate partner violence (Wymbs et al. 2012, in press). Finally, when married, individuals with ADHD are more likely to divorce than individuals without ADHD (e.g., Biederman et al. 2006; Fargason and Ford 1994; Kessler et al. 2006; Murphy and Barkley 1996). Similar problems also exist for individuals who exhibit ED. "
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    ABSTRACT: Individuals with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) experience impairments in a number of functional domains. Although current evidence-based treatments for ADHD reduce symptoms and improve academic and behavioral functioning, they have minimal impact on social functioning or on risky behaviors (see Evans et al. in J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol, 43:527–551, 2014 for review). Preliminary evidence indicates that emotion dysregulation (ED) is associated with impairments across the developmental spectrum, such as social impairment and risky behaviors, and that its relative absence/presence is differentially associated with treatment response. It thus stands to reason that by incorporating a focus on ED in interventions targeting social impairment and risky behaviors, we may be able to increase the number of youth who respond to such interventions and decrease the prevalence or degree of these impairments and behaviors among youth and adults with ADHD. However, a number of questions remain unaddressed about the association between ADHD and ED, such as the portion of individuals with ADHD who experience ED, the extent to which ED is associated with the above impairments and behaviors, and whether or not ED is malleable. To begin addressing these questions, we summarize and critically evaluate the literature on the association between ADHD and ED and make recommendations for future basic, translational, and treatment outcome research.
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    • "Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common psychiatric disorders, affecting 5.3% of children [Polanczyck et al., 2007] and 2.5–4.4% of adults worldwide [Kessler et al., 2006; Simon et al., 2009]. It is associated with a wide range of functional impairments across life domains and with higher incidence of other psychiatric disorders [Biederman et al., 2006; Kessler et al., 2006]. High heritability estimates (around 76–80%) have been indicated for ADHD, both in children [Faraone et al., 2005] and adults [Chang et al., 2013]. "
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